I have no idea how long it’s been – at least since Monday. Katniss is a weather-dependent cat; she has been a puddle, to the point where I’ve had to actively search my memory to find the last time she was awake. Thank goodness we are creatures of habit here. One of her habits is to sit on the kitchen table till we give her water in the measuring cup, both morning and evening, so that we pet her for a minute while she drinks. Daughter and I might be “casual,” but not the cat.

Anyway. Bits of daylight.


My life would be well-served by a good raincoat and hat. We don’t want to melt now, do we?

I do these little faces.


She’s tiny, maybe 1 1/2 inches high? Caption says “she’s not really sad, just tired and maybe perplexed.”


I start with a shape, and poke at it.


Baseball cap guy is an inch tall.

These guys make my sketchbooks a little creepy. There’s all these people staring out at me. I suppose I could quit doing it, but then these people wouldn’t get a chance to exist.

Garden is almost in. I’m going to look for pavers, to make a flat space around my clothes line for a few more pots. I have to fill the front planter box and plant it, and get tomatoes into buckets, and pick up the mini monarch oasis that a local school is selling for a fundraiser. I want to line a clay saucer with pebbles, grout it and seal it for a bird bath. I want a million things, but that’s the very short list of things that will probably happen with my garden this year. The big crisis was that I was going to forego vinca vines this year, so I planted the hanging baskets with petunias and alyssum. Then I bought vinca vines anyway and put them in their own basket. And now I’m looking at them and trying soooo hard to not dig them up and put them in with the petunias. Not like I’m neurotic with a dollop of OCD or anything. Do something different, Kirsten! It won’t hurt you, I promise. I might still dig them up and plant them in dead coffee pots, just for fun.

You go along for days and weeks and months concentrating on this jumble of yarn in your lap, paying attention one loop at a time (or not, sometimes, but that’s another story). And then you get to the last row, and the bind-off takes over a half hour, but all of a sudden it’s free! and you have this wonderful winged creature that’s been hidden in a lumpy mess.


Reyna, from Ravelry. I am even showing you the photo where you can see that I didn’t move the marker correctly, and my center has slipped. I care, and am horribly embarrassed, but I really like this pretty. You’ll never see that it’s off when it’s lumped up around my neck – and upper torso, because it is huge! About 2 meters across, maybe 80 centimeters down. Makes me happy.


But notice up on top where it’s a quiet, earthy thing, and down below where it’s Mardi Gras? I did the alternating rows thing a grand total of once (if you look hard, you can see where), and decided to pretend that I wanted those bright colors down there. I like the meshiness. I’m planning on doing a pillbox sort of hat and a pair of fingerless mitts or maybe mittens out of the rest. Someday.

I really love knitting lace shawls. I think I like wearing them nearly as much. I need more, I’m sure.

And also, the color in these images sucks. And it’s wrong side out. I apologize.

I’ve got a skein of fingering weight from Gnarled Paw, that I think will be my next victim.

Have a tulip or two.


Dumb weather. I am a little frustrated with this spring. Also cloudy skies. But the fire danger has dropped from Don’t Breathe! to very low. I’ve been janitoring at work a lot, because the printer I need to work from is down, and it’s starting to annoy me – except for some dumb reason I am proud of how good the classroom looks. I am doomed to scrub forever. (I even pulled the fridges and swept and mopped behind them. Gads.)


These are a lovely shell pink IRL, but warm-light CFLs will have their way with things.


Can’t mow. The bees need them. And boy howdee, did I see a big bumbler bumbling along this morning.

It was 95º F on Friday, here. 50’s – 60’s for this week, and sunny.


Stories. Every picture tells one.


I was on the phone. I took a chance. And then I opened Gimp. Opened it like a pro, if I do say so myself.

I was at the happy job today, washing the front windows. A woman walked by, our eyes met, we smiled. Because we live in paradise, and we know it.

Help me. I’m starting to like Ted Cruz.

ETA: Okay. You can ignore most/some/all of this. It looks like Colinette is shutting down. I wonder why. (Eye roll, please.)

It’s all true.

So, a year ago? Two? Kmkat came up and we went yarn shopping in Bayfield, because that’s how we roll.  I bought a pretty pretty skein of Colinette Jitterbug, colorway Copper Beech.  And it sat in its bright red bag, mocking me, daring me to come up with a pattern that would do it justice. (Why do I buy yarn like that? I have a cat. I don’t need more torment.)

Time to get on a plane, hours of enforced sitting in one place, must find pattern.  So I checked out Ravelry, and found Reyna, and it was good.  And I got on the planes and read my book and was too busy and didn’t pick up the knitting till the last day and screwed up in the first four rows three times and put it down and didn’t touch it for a week after I got back. But I’ve made progress! Lots of progress.IMG_2032

Gratuitous garbled still-on-needles beauty shot. However, I have 28 rows with over 200 stitches each left, and a baseball-size ball of yarn. I could go back to Bayfield and see if they have another skein, or I can go online and find the same yarn for $10 cheaper.  So I did that instead, and we all know how this goes.


I feel hurt and betrayed. There are entirely other colors in this new ball, above and beyond the whole, “oh, it’s completely different – huh” vibe I’m getting. And the bits of color are about twice as long as they are in the first skein. The original was dyed in February 2013, the new one was dyed in August. Seasonal affective disorder? Yeah, yeah, every other row blend it in no one will notice be sure to buy enough yarn for your project even though the pattern you end up using hasn’t been written yet it’s not our fault- and you’ll have this half ball of yarn that you wanted to make something co-ordinating with, that doesn’t match.

I know, totally whiney. Maybe it’s an extension of the hat curse – I was going to make a hat to match, I love hats, I love making them, I look like Cousin Itt. An advantage of having tried and failed so often to start this project was that I finally cast off one of the attempts and washed/blocked it, so I know how soft and lovely this is going to be. And yes I apologize for something – I’m not sure what, since the pattern calls for 400 yards on size 4 needles, which is what I’ve got going on, and maybe I have enough yarn to come kind of close. But this isn’t exactly subtle. Argh. I don’t know, it just seems like this is sort of beyond normal. I apparently am wrong. And I’ve got hours into the scarf, and I’ve rolled up the new yarn. Just ack.


Stitch markers. I make them. The two-loop bit has benefits; you can catch the other loop and pull it off the needle, and also you can wrestle the yarn from the yarn-over under the second loop, so it doesn’t slide under the stitch marker.


I’m thinking $10 for 2, plus a couple bucks for shipping, the infinity markers at $8 each. The needles shown are 4, 5, and 7. I can give you actual measurements if you want. They’re copper and brass, with silver solder at the joins, and sanded to actual smoothness. I can finish them with fingernail polish to keep them from tarnishing, if you want. I’m looking into acrylic sprays, too. But right now, they’re raw. I don’t mind it, but then again, I’ve got a Dremel in the basement just for polishing things.


It really is pretty yarn.





Really. I have to eat between 4 and 4:30, and I know this, what with the frequent standing at the refrigerator shoving stuff in my mouth for a half-hour, literally, between 4 and 4:30, on my days off. Especially when I’m doing physical stuff, like my job, which ends at 5.

So today I’m scrubbing table tops with Comet and covering them with plastic for the next watercolor class, and there’s customers, and it’s getting late and I haven’t done the bathroom or the front room or the books for the day and I still have to sweep and mop the floor and it’s getting later and later and I finally do as much as I can and leave at 5:40 and DON’T stop at a fast food place or the co-op, but just drive home figuring it will be okay for Pete’s sake grow up it won’t kill you to be hungry.

I walk in the door and just drop everything I’m carrying, purse, lunch bag, whatever, clunk. I’m standing in the kitchen bitching about everybody in my life who has ever told me ever I wasn’t doing a good enough job and it really sucks that people aren’t clear about their expectation and they all are bad and horrible people – so many horrible people – while I’m cutting open an avocado which doesn’t twist apart, nor does the pit come out till I cut the half in half and twist the bastard and even then the skin off the pit stays in place, and then it doesn’t peel for god’s sake and finally I take the 10-inch chef’s knife and just whack the shit out of the thing and scrape the innards off with my teeth because damn if I’m not going to eat the stupid stupid piece of fruit just because it thinks it’s all that –

And about half-way through, blood sugars start creeping back up out of the red, and I’m all, “Oh, and how was your day?”

My poor child. Moral? If eating a bag of french fries is all that stands between you and a 10-inch chef’s knife, eat the fries.


Chinese gardens again. I really want to grow bamboo.

Katniss is a very special cat. Sensitive. “May you live in interesting times,” “May you have a sensitive cat.” Pretty much the same thing.

Because I am a normal cat owner, I started giving her about a teaspoon of milk in the morning. An entire teaspoon. And because she is a special cat, it affected her digestion. And that in turn affected where she thought it would be safe to poop and OMG I have to poop and I don’t know what to do and I’ll run around the house yowling because poops are coming and I am afraid or distressed or something I don’t know what. (Yeah, it took me 6 months to make the connection. I am a bad pet owner.) So, we let her out into the garage, and she walks around distressed, and finally finds someplace where a kitty can poop – usually right in front of my car door, especially if the three litter boxes at her disposal aren’t all at 100%.

Daughter finally twigged to the idea that our adapting our expectations of normal to let Katniss poop in a way that is not so distressing is essentially an accommodation of her special needs. I consider all the adaptations we made for our moop to be essentially for Daughter’s benefit, so that she could see how the world works if you just let go. (I am such a grown-up; give me a gold star.) (I also need one for giving the cat tissue paper. Not any tissue, just the dark tissue, and only when it comes with yarn. I told you she was special.) (I am going to knit her a kitteh sleeping pad. It will be colorwork stripes (she likes laying at an angle to stripes), in dark blue and burgundy (her favorite colors), in wool, because she loves it – and I love my Fair Isle sweater. I also am a special person.) Also, Daughter is a genius cat whisperer. She’s the one who’s figured out most of the weird stuff. But Katniss is a human whisperer; she’s figured out that I am the prime mover and shaker, and if something needs to be done, she needs to pee in my bed.

And that is how my world turns. I guess it all works out.


Outside the Chinese gardens somewhere in Portland, almost a month ago already. It was a beautiful day.


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